Trick [1999]

While most of the recent outpouring of gay cinema tries to coast on a smile and a little bit of charm, Trick provides some considerable filmmaking cojones to back up its good looks: a talented cast, a witty screenplay, and a sweet sense of romance. Unfolding as part stressed-out fever dream and part farce, Trick chronicles one tumultuous night in the life of aspiring Broadway songwriter Gabe (Christian Campbell), who's suffering from both a heterosexual roommate (who kicks him out when there's female companionship) and a bad case of writer's block. Making an impulsive side trip to a gay bar, he locks eyes with a hunky go-go boy (J.P. Pitoc), who magically appears later that night on the subway, with amorous intentions to boot. Hotfooting their way back to Gabe's apartment, they're interrupted in medias res by Gabe's roommate, girlfriend in tow. From there it's downhill fast, as the two unsuccessfully scramble to find a place to finish things up. On their nighttime odyssey, though, both discover that there's more than sex and heat to their interaction. And much like its premise, Trick evolves from what seems to be a quickie one-night stand to something more substantial, a film with heart and a very funny soul. Jason Schafer's screenplay puts the luckless couple into one bind after another, and furnishes them with incredibly entertaining dialogue; fortunately, both the leads are up to the challenge of bringing it to life. Campbell (Neve's older brother) has a sweet smile and gentle comic timing; the surprise, however, is Pitoc, whose chiseled physique belies both a wicked sense of humor and a sincere-without-being-gooey romantic streak. Both are aided and abetted by a finely tuned supporting cast, most notably Clinton Leupp as an acidic, motor-mouthed drag queen and Tori Spelling in a go-for-broke star turn as Campbell's best friend, a painfully bad singer-actress. By the end of the movie, you'll be entirely won over, and anxiously awaiting a second date and more from these actors and filmmakers. --Mark Englehart

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Katherine:
Oh my god, I have to tell you about this reall artsy party this French-Canadian girl in my acting class threw. Like everyone there they wrote like poems or novellas or something. So this one college guy, he was asian, he gets up with his little leather portfolio with a satin ribbon to tie it shut and he's gonna read his poetry. But before he starts reading, he tells us about his fascinations with the human body and he says what fascinates him even more is what comes out of the human body.

Katherine:
I know I'm really lactose intolerant but I really wish these had cheese on them. Anyway, evidentally he's tasted everything that's come out of his body except shit and he says he'll probably taste that one day too. And then he reads a poem about "shit" so I'm thinking, "Okay, this guy really likes shit," right? And then he keeps reading and he reads 17 poems all about shit. 17! I'm not kidding. And he's talking about the smells and the colors and the farting... Gabe, can you pass me the ketchup? Thanks. Anyway, I was so relieved when he got tired of reading. Then this ethnic woman stands up, she was like Native American or Pilipino, I can never really tell the difference, she didn't have a poem to read so she tells us about a problem that she's having. A sex problem. She says that there's like some force that's making her screw around all the time. All these guys are after her and I mean, she's not what I would call sexy. Well, not that I'm into women that way, but I can tell when a woman's sexy. I mean, she's not what I would call a skank or anything, she's just not what I would call sexy, that's all. So, anyway, this is really funny

Katherine:
, I drank soo much homemade ice tea that I really had to pee right in the middle of her story, right? So I get up, I go to the bathroom, but the bathroom door's locked. So I'm kind of standing there looking at the wallpaper, which is really kind of giving me a headache. Then all of a sudden the toilet flushes, the door opens and the "shit guy" walks out and he's smiling. And not one of those like polite acknowledgement smiles, but he's like SMILING like he's happy about something and all of a sudden I didn't have to pee anymore.

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